Magic Marsh underpins Australia win
Shaun Marsh struck a sensational century, before Australia produced a polished bowling performance to secure a 46-run win in the second one-day international against England in Hobart.
The game, which was the first day-night clash at the Bellerive Oval, had seemed the tourists’ to lose for much of the Australia innings as they slipped to 142 for eight.
However, Marsh, well supported by Doug Bollinger’s unlikely 30, moved on to a second one-day international hundred to help Australia post a winning total of 230 all out.
England were quickly reduced to 36 for three in reply, with Bollinger claiming the prized wickets of Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen in successive balls.
It was a position from which they never fully recovered and, despite Jonathan Trott, Ian Bell, Eoin Morgan and Michael Yardy all getting starts, England were dismissed for 184 with five overs unused.
After Strauss won the toss and elected to bowl, Ajmal Shahzad celebrated his World Cup call-up by typifying what, up until the final 10 overs, was an excellent England bowling display.
The Yorkshire seamer’s probing fuller length offered a delightful contrast to Chris Tremlett’s bang-it-into-the-pitch style as England pressured Australia from the start.
Shahzad, in particular, bowled sensationally early on, his restriction of the openers best illustrated by a first-over maiden - a feat not achieved by England at any stage during Saturday’s series opener at Melbourne.
Clearly brimming with confidence after his magnificent match-winning unbeaten 161 at the MCG, Shane Watson seemed in no mood to hang around during the opening exchanges, but he played on to Shahzad for five as he attempted to run the ball down to third man.
That wicket saw Australia reacquaint themselves with the sort of top-order collapse seen during the Ashes, although their strife was mainly their own doing as they played with the sort of carelessness associated with schoolboys having a knock-around on the park rather than international cricketers.
Brad Haddin was the first guilty man, playing loosely at a Shahzad nip-backer with no foot movement and dragging on.
Skipper Michael Clarke somehow managed to hit a short, wide balls from Tim Bresnan straight to Bell at point, before David Hussey’s scratchy 10-ball stay ended when he pushed at a wide Tremlett delivery and guided the ball to Strauss at gully.
Cameron White, well supported by Marsh, started the rebuilding effort with a mixture of good running and the odd boundary, the former proving especially dominant.
Marsh reached his half-century soon after, off 64 balls, and the hundred-run stand was brought up when White lifted Yardy over cover for four.
However, White fell to the next delivery, hitting a more flighted delivery straight back to the left-arm spinner, who took a smart catch.
That alliance was soon forgotten as England firmly regained control courtesy of another collapse.
Steven Smith, apparently not watching as White and Marsh gave themselves time before playing expansive shots, drove loosely and dragged on to Shahzad; the recalled Nathan Hauritz top-edged Tim Bresnan to Trott at fine-leg; and Yardy bowled Brett Lee for a duck.
Bollinger hung around, much to the delight of the home faithful, riding his luck on occasion to put on a 88 in 11.2 overs with Marsh.
England’s frustration was compounded by Marsh bringing up his ton as he followed up successive fours off Yardy with a brilliant slog-swept six.
England did manage to stem the flow of runs thereafter, before Bollinger and Marsh, who made a 114-ball 110, fell to successive Tremlett deliveries.
Matt Prior, back in the one-day side after a 12-month absence fell without scoring early in England's reply.
Lee, who took 2-39, was the bowler, finding the outside edge with a delivery which just nibbled away on a length - allowing Watson to take a comfortable catch at first slip.
Strauss was looking increasingly authoritative with Trott, who endured a couple of difficult moments against the short ball, slowly getting into his stride.
However, after being pushed back by a barrage of short-pitched bowling, England’s skipper was trapped leg before by Bollinger, who then bowled Pietersen, via an inside edge, with a delivery that nipped back slightly.
Steady rebuilding was the order of the day from then on and, in Trott and Bell, England had two men willing to do just that.
But, with the partnership set to reach 50, Trott pulled a Smith long-hop to Hussey at midwicket to depart for 32, and England continued to contribute to their own downfall as Bell cut Lee straight to backward-point.
Australia put the squeeze on thereafter, but there were signs of the shackles being broken when Morgan heaved Hauritz, who later left the field with an apparent dislocated shoulder after a diving stop, over midwicket for six.
However, he skied Watson to the same area, where Tait took an excellent catch running back, when the batting powerplay was taken in the 35th over to again hand Australia the initiative.
Yardy soon followed after confusion with Prior, who was running for Bresnan, led to a run-out.
Bresnan, whose career-best ODI score of 80 came against Australia in last year’s Champions Trophy, had not given up, illustrated by consecutive boundaries off Lee.
But Bollinger, who finished with figures of 4-28, removed him and James Tredwell to end all hope before Clarke ran Shahzad out to give Australia a 2-0 lead in the seven-match series.